Digestive and physiologic effects of a wheat bran extract, arabino-xylan-oligosaccharide, in breakfast cereal

Kevin C Maki, Glenn R Gibson, Robin S Dickmann, Cyril W C Kendall, C-Y Oliver Chen, Adele Costabile, Elena M Comelli, Diane L McKay, Nelson G Almeida, David Jenkins, Gordon A Zello, Jeffrey B Blumberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


OBJECTIVE: We assessed whether a wheat bran extract containing arabino-xylan-oligosaccharide (AXOS) elicited a prebiotic effect and influenced other physiologic parameters when consumed in ready-to-eat cereal at two dose levels.

METHODS: This double-blind, randomized, controlled, crossover trial evaluated the effects of consuming AXOS at 0 (control), 2.2, or 4.8 g/d as part of ready-to-eat cereal for 3 wk in 55 healthy men and women. Fecal microbial levels, postprandial serum ferulic acid concentrations, and other physiologic parameters were assessed at the beginning and end of each condition.

RESULTS: The median bifidobacteria content of stool samples (log₁₀/grams of dry weight [DW]) was found to be higher in the subjects consuming the 4.8-g/d dose (10.03) than in those consuming 2.2 g/d (9.93) and control (9.84, P < 0.001). No significant changes in the populations of other fecal microbes were observed, indicating a selective increase in fecal bifidobacteria. Postprandial ferulic acid was measured at 120 min at the start and end of each 3-wk treatment period in subjects at least 50 y old (n = 37) and increased in a dose-dependent manner (end-of-treatment values 0.007, 0.050, and 0.069 μg/mL for the control, AXOS 2.2 g/d, and AXOS 4.8 g/d conditions, respectively, P for trend < 0.001).

CONCLUSION: These results indicate that AXOS has prebiotic properties, selectively increasing fecal bifidobacteria, and increases postprandial ferulic acid concentrations in a dose-dependent manner in healthy men and women.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1115-21
Number of pages7
JournalComplete Nutrition
Issue number11-12
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jul 2012


  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Bifidobacterium
  • Breakfast
  • Cohort Studies
  • Coumaric Acids
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Dietary Fiber
  • Digestion
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Edible Grain
  • Feces
  • Female
  • Food, Fortified
  • Humans
  • Illinois
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Oligosaccharides
  • Plant Extracts
  • Triticum
  • Xylans

Cite this

Maki, K. C., Gibson, G. R., Dickmann, R. S., Kendall, C. W. C., Chen, C-Y. O., Costabile, A., Comelli, E. M., McKay, D. L., Almeida, N. G., Jenkins, D., Zello, G. A., & Blumberg, J. B. (2012). Digestive and physiologic effects of a wheat bran extract, arabino-xylan-oligosaccharide, in breakfast cereal. Complete Nutrition , 28(11-12), 1115-21. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nut.2012.02.010